Ericsson targets fresh markets

Ericsson’s CEO wants to break into new territory beyond its traditional telecoms markets, because he is dissatisfied with the firm’s present position.
Hans Vestberg said the firm could use its existing expertise to push into sectors including cable, TV, healthcare, transport and utilities, during a presentation at the firm’s capital markets day yesterday.
“These are industries where there is a huge need for telecommunication services,” Vestberg said, noting that Ericsson’s current capabilities “enable us to address customers also beyond traditional telecom operators.”
However, the new sectors will not detract from Ericsson’s existing telecoms markets, which Vestberg said still offers good long-term growth opportunities, as carriers look to upgrade GSM networks.
He estimated there are “at least 1.5 million installed GSM radio base stations,” that need to be upgraded to meet growing consumer demand for mobile broadband. “Less than 5% of the world’s population has access to 21 Mbit/s or more in the air,” he noted.
Network upgrades, managed services, consulting, system integration and the firm’s ST-Ericsson and Sony Ericsson joint ventures give the firm an addressable market worth $350 billion (€273 billion), Vestberg said.
The firm will continue to invest in converged networks, and predicts the number of mobile broadband users will hit 3.5 billion in 2015, from 400 million at present.